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Podcast: How to Protect Your Health Against Toxic Behavior by Dr. Ben Kim

Several years ago, I was fortunate to meet a lady named Deborah at a fasting clinic in northern California. I had several conversations with Deborah over the course of a year, and what I remember most about her is that her kindness was amazingly genuine; the feeling for me was that she had spent a lifetime enduring great sadness and suffering, and had done much inner work to identify and strive to live according to her ideals.

One day, I asked Deborah why she chose to eat her meals alone rather than with other fasting guests. After a beat of silence, she told me that she was getting some negative vibes from another guest, and that she felt that it was best for her resting experience to stay away from that energy. I remember her using the word "toxic" to describe the other guest's energy - not in a malicious way, but with a thoughtful and observational tone.

Deborah's thoughts on avoiding unnecessary toxic energy have stayed with me over the years. I feel that this facet of living is a vastly underrated determinant of health and overall quality of life. We know that our sense of emotional balance or lack thereof has constant influence over the health of every organ system in our bodies, particularly our nervous and endocrine systems. And clearly, our emotional health status is largely affected by the interactions that we experience with ourselves and others on a daily basis. So it stands to reason that learning how to identify and effectively deal with toxic influences is an important skill to develop when looking to experience optimal health and a peaceful life.

How to Identify Human Toxicity

Generally speaking, I think it's safe to say that a person is toxic to your health if his or her behavior makes you feel bad on a regular basis. Clearly, there are exceptions to this guideline. For example, if a close friend or family member shares a concern about your behavior with a spirit of wanting to improve your relationship, you may feel bad and your health may take a temporary hit, but it doesn't make sense to label such friends or family members as being toxic.

What follows are specific patterns of behavior that I believe fall into the "toxic-to-your-health" category:

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How to Protect Your Health Against Toxic Behavior

 
 

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